The power of creativity

Posted: November 8, 2014 in cultural commentary
Tags: , , , , ,

I had a couple of moments yesterday that reminded me of the immense power of human creativity and just how awesome that is.

One was posting yesterday’s flash fiction story, ‘Love That Never Lived‘. Months after first writing this story it still churns me up inside, and that’s hardly surprising as my rawest emotions that went into it. But I also got some really touching responses from other people who had been moved by the story. It’s hardly news that a good story can move us to joy or sorrow, but it’s worth being reminded.

Then in the evening I was playing the computer game Minecraft, which I’ve just got into this week. I was building a tall tower to that I could see the surrounding area, and building this tower involved standing on the edge and seeing the surrounding landscape from my character’s point of view. Looking out from up there I found myself suffering a moment of honest to goodness vertigo. Just looking down, realising my character could easily fall and be badly hurt or killed, brought up the same feelings I get if I look down from a tall building. It was absurd but strangely powerful, as if the combination of perspective and movement in the game made it real despite the blocky, cartoonish visuals.

If we ever need a reminder that all forms of creativity are equally worthy of the label of ‘art’, or that they can be powerful forces and not just escapism, it’s moments like this.

What’s moved you recently?

  1. Oh, you’re playing Minecraft!!! That’s a great creative outlet. I got really into it, too. Not only is it fun to mine and build things yourself, but it’s also a real kick to coordinate with others and create as a group within the game. Have fun!

    • I haven’t started playing with others yet but I think I might try to get Laura to play. She enjoys games where you build stuff up, and it would be cool to share our computer gaming.

      Man, but it’s addictive though, isn’t it?

  2. Lynda says:

    This has reminded me of the first experiences I had playing first-person computer games. Wolfenstein was stressful (and boring!), but the Aliens computer game on the old Nintendo was so stressful and scary for me I just couldn’t play it. I don’t get hit by vertigo unless it’s a real(istic) camera shot in a film, but suspense and tension really freak me out in any form. I’ve sometimes spent evenings clucching a pillow while playing Cthulu where there wasn’t even anything to look at.

    • I wonder if it’s partly that first person view in computer games reduces the barriers to imagining yourself into the situation, thus making it more immediate. Idea Channel’s video on controlling s being your avatar touches on this to some extent:

      Argh, tried three times to get the right video link in – hopefully got it this time.

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